Movie poster for Saawariya
|Directed by||Sanjay Leela Bhansali|
|Produced by||Sanjay Leela Bhansali|
|Written by||Prakash Kapadia
|Based on||White Nights
by Fyodor Dostoyevski
|Narrated by||Rani Mukerji|
|Music by||Monty Sharma|
|Cinematography||Ravi K. Chandran|
|Editing by||Sanjay Leela Bhansali|
|Distributed by||Sony Pictures
|Running time||140 minutes|
|Box office||360 million (US$5.5 million)
Saawariya (or Sanwariya another pronunciation) (Hindi: सावरिया, translation: My Love) is a 2007 Hindi romance film produced and directed by Sanjay Leela Bhansali. The film is based on Fyodor Dostoevsky's short story "White Nights".
Co-produced by Sony Pictures Entertainment and released on 9 November 2007, it is the first Bollywood movie to receive a North American release by a Hollywood studio, shortly preceding Walt Disney Pictures' animated feature Roadside Romeo (2008), and Warner Bros.' Chandni Chowk to China. Additionally, it is one of the first Bollywood films to be released on Blu-ray Disc.
The film marks the debut of both the lead actors; Ranbir Kapoor (son of actors Rishi Kapoor and Neetu Singh) and Sonam Kapoor (daughter of Anil Kapoor). It also stars Rani Mukerji and Salman Khan in cameos and Zohra Sehgal in a supporting role.
It flopped as it clashed with Shahrukh Khan's Om Shanti Om.
The story is narrated by Gulabji (Rani Mukerji), a prostitute who frequents RK Bar (the town's most luxurious club). She introduces the audience to the bar's lead singer, Ranbir Raj (Ranbir Kapoor) whom she lovingly calls "Saawariya" (or loved one), who is a free-spirited and kind-hearted guy with no worries at all. One night, while sleeping on the street, he and Gulabji meet. Despite knowing what Gulabji does, Raj still treats her in a friendly manner and, unlike other men, is kind to the other prostitutes and tries to brighten their sad lives. When he tells Gulabji that he needs somewhere to stay and a job for a living, she tells him that there is only one woman who'll give him a place to stay. That woman is Lilian (Zohra Sehgal) – but she allows only those she likes. Raj decides to meet her the next morning.
Raj meets Lilian, and they have a very emotional chat, during which Lillian reveals she had a son who left her many years ago and never returned. After being overwhelmed by the sheer genuineness of Raj, she agrees to let him stay with her because he reminds her of her long lost son. Raj goes out for a walk in the night and meets a mysterious girl dressed in black and holding an umbrella. He tries to talk to her and starts following her, but under the wrong impression, she shouts at Raj and tells him to go away. Raj tells her that he will go away, but on the condition that he'd escort her to safety, lest someone with bad intentions would follow and trouble her. Then, as predicted by Raj, a drunkard begins following her and Raj saves her from him. Raj insists she allow him to escort her to her home, to which she agrees. Raj then discovers that her name is Sakina (Sonam Kapoor), and that night Raj falls in love with her.
After thinking about her all night, Raj decides to confess about his feelings to Sakina. When he calls to her the next night after resigning from his job so he can see her, Sakina ignores him and refuses to speak to him. Raj gets angry with her but the pair reconcile. He takes her to his favourite place, on the top of town clock building. In front of a picturesque scene of the blue moon and a train arriving on the horizon, Sakina reveals that she is in love with someone: his name is Imaan (Salman Khan), and explains to Raj how she fell in love with him when he boarded at her house. Imaan left the house but promised to return on Eid for Sakina. It has been a while and Imaan has still not returned for her, though she has been waiting for him faithfully. Hearing this, Raj does not confess about his feelings and becomes heart-broken.
Although Raj now knows that Sakina doesn’t love him and her friendship was not love but just pure friendship, he readies himself to help her anyhow. However, his love-lorn heart refuses to believe that there is someone called Imaan. He asks Gulabji for advice, who advises him to tell Sakina how he feels. With the entire neighbourhood cheering him on, he decides to propose to Sakina on the night of Eid. He takes Sakina to RK Bar and sings his favourite song for her. Sakina remembers that it’s time to meet Imaan at the bridge and leaves. Following her, Raj tells her that he has discovered that there is no Imaan and it's all a myth; upon hearing this, Sakina hurts Raj, telling him to let her go. Raj goes to Gulabji, saying he wants to be with her for the night (referring to her profession), insulting her. Gulabji, who loves Raj but knows that he loves Sakina, gets deeply hurt by this and gets Raj thrown out of the brothel onto the street, where he is beaten up by a few of Gulabji's hench men. She tells one of her colleagues that even though she loves Raj, this is not the way she intends to love him and if he gets entangled in the world of prostitutes, he will forever lose his pure soul.
He returns to the place where Sakina is waiting, where Imaan has still not arrived. Sakina, befuddled and heart-broken, becomes sure that there is no chance of Imaan coming back, so she decides to be with Raj, as she knows how much he loves her. Raj tries to make Sakina happy and succeeds; they enjoy the first snowfall. When they are returning home, they pass the bridge where they first met and see Imaan waiting for Sakina. Torn between the two: her true love and the love of the guy who loves her unconditionally, Sakina hesitates as she steps toward Imaan. Raj, however, tells her to go and reunite with Imaan.
The movie ends as a tribute to yesteryear great Raj Kapoor, where Raj walks and sings exactly like him from Shree 420, retreating into a side street and walks off, remembering the sweet moments he spent with Sakina.
- Ranbir Kapoor as Ranbir Raj (referred to as "Saawariya" by Gulabji)
- Sonam Kapoor as Sakina
- Rani Mukerji as Gulabji
- Salman Khan as Imaan
- Zohra Sehgal as Lilian aka Lilipop
- Begum Para as Nabila / Badi Ammi (Sakina's Grandmother)
- Vibha Chibber as Naseeban
- Atheya Chaudhri as Jhumri Aapa
- Kenny Desai as Mr. D'costa (Owner of RK Bar)
- sanaya irani as a back round dancer
Elaborate sets for the imaginary city where the film is set, complete with lakes, streets, shops, signages and a clock tower, were designed by production designer Omung Kumar, who had previously worked with Bhansali on Black (2005).
After the release of the film, it became embroiled in controversy. There were charges that the plot was lifted from the Tamil movie Iyarkai, without the permission of the film's National Award winning director S. P. Jananathan. But, the story of Iyarkai itself is loosely based on "White Nights", a Russian short story by Fyodor Dostoevsky, just as Saawariya claims to be.
The soundtrack for the film was released to mixed reviews on 19 September 2007. Indiafm gave the music three out of five stars, stating that, "The title song would be remembered for months to come, if not years, the others do not really go that extra distance".
|Studio album by Monty Sharma|
19 September 2007 (India)
|Genre||Feature film soundtrack|
|Producer||Sanjay Leela Bhansali|
|Monty Sharma chronology|
|"Saawariya"||Shail Hada||02:45||Picturised on Ranbir Kapoor & Rani Mukerji|
|"Jab Se Tere Naina"||Shaan||04:44||Picturised on Ranbir Kapoor|
|"Masha-Allah"||Kunal Ganjawala & Shreya Ghoshal||05:28||Picturised on Ranbir Kapoor & Sonam Kapoor|
|"Thode Badmaash"||Shreya Ghoshal||03:19||Picturised on Ranbir Kapoor & Sonam Kapoor
Composer: Sanjay Leela Bhansali
|"Yun Shabnami"||Parthiv Gohil||05:15||Picturised on Ranbir Kapoor & Sonam Kapoor|
|"Daras Bina Nahin Chain"||Richa Sharma, Shail Hada & Parthiv Gohil||04:45||Present as the background music in the film|
|"Sawar Gayi"||Shreya Ghoshal||03:42||Not in movie|
|"Jaan-E-Jaan"||Kunal Ganjawala & Shreya Ghoshal||05:59||Picturised on Ranbir Kapoor & Sonam Kapoor|
|"Pari"||Kunal Ganjawala||05:19||Picturised on Rani Mukerji & Ranbir Kapoor|
|"Chhabeela"||Alka Yagnik||05:23||Picturised on Rani Mukerji & Ranbir Kapoor|
|"Saawariya (Reprise)"||Shail Hada||03:06||Picturised on Ranbir Kapoor & Sonam Kapoor|
Despite high expectations for the film, Saawariya did not live up to its expectations throughout the Indian audience. On the other hand, Saawariya got mixed reviews in other countries. It maintains a 39% rotten rating on Rotten Tomatoes with an average rating of 5/10 and a 44% Mixed or average rating on MetaCritic. Newcomers Ranbir and Sonam's performances were praised, and Ranbir Kapoor won Best Male Debut at the Filmfare Awards. The film was commercially a flop.
- Best Male Playback – Shaan, Jab Se Tere Naina
- Best Male Debut – Ranbir Kapoor
- RD Burman Award – Monty Sharma 
- Most Promising Newcomer – Male – Ranbir Kapoor
- Stardust Superstar of Tomorrow - Female – Sonam Kapoor
- Stardust Superstar of Tomorrow - Male, Ranbir Kapoor
- Standout performance by a Music Director – Monty Sharma
- Standout performance by a Lyricst – Sandeep Nath, Yoon Shabnami
- Chhabra, Aseem, "From Bollywood to Chinatown: Warner Bros. teams with India for 'Chandni Chowk' martial-arts musical", Film Journal International, 14 January 2009
- "Bollywood Comes to Blu-ray with 'Saawariya'". High-Def Digest. 3 January 2008. Retrieved 5 February 2011.
- "Sanjay Leela Bhansali on Saawariya". 27 March 2006. Retrieved 30 April 2007.
- "Rani Mukherji to play courtesan in Saawariya". 9 November 2006. Retrieved 30 September 2007.
- "Rani plays a prostitute in Saawariya". 8 January 2007. Retrieved 30 September 2007.
- Deepanjana Pal (September 2013). "Places Other Than This". The Big Indian Picture. Retrieved 2013-12-06.
- "mid-day.com". Saawariya Debuts in New York Times. Retrieved 16 September 2007.
- "'Saawariya' first screening held". Retrieved 30 October 2007.
- Saawariya is Iyarkai movie story
- "Music review". 27 March 2006. Retrieved 21 September 2007.
- "Saawariya at Rotten Tomatoes". 18 October 2008. Retrieved 27 June 2009.
- "Saawariya at Metacritic". 18 October 2008. Retrieved 27 June 2009.
- Bollywood Hungama News Network (26 January 2008). "Winners of Max Stardust Awards 2008". Indiafm.com. Retrieved 26 January 2008.